Spirit Of The Staircase

So, this is actually a little embarrassing, but too funny not to share anyway.

In early 1998, which as of this writing is nearly a quarter of a century ago, I had this little idea that it would be fun to read The Washington Post every day and whenever one of their writers said something especially boneheaded I would write the equivalent to a letter to the editor, but on a special web site of my own for that purpose.

It’s not like I had any kind of special antipathy towards the Post, then or now. On the contrary, it’s the newspaper I read growing up, and to this day my mom subscribes to their print edition. But no one is perfect, and their coverage does tend to slant in a different direction than I do — although it’s probably a point in their favor that I’ve seen both progressives and conservatives complain about their coverage.

There were a number of reasons I never followed through, including that I was too busy with things that actually paid; that it would have required a lot of manual formatting since blogging hosts hadn’t quite hit the scene by then; and, perhaps worst of all, that I was never sure what I would call it.

So all this time, in my mental attic of boxed up ideas it’s just been filed away as “the Post thing”. And it was only today, decades later, that totally out of the blue I realized the best possible name for it would be…

The Washington Riposte

And so ends what is probably the worst case of l’esprit de l’escalier in history.

Of course, that doesn’t mean I’m actually going to do this, especially since I’m actually busier now that I was then. But at least now if I do ever decide to become a gadfly buzzing around the nation’s newspaper of record, I finally know what I’ll call it. And yes, I did register the domain name… just in case.